The Texas Supreme Court agreed on Friday to suspend a ruling by a lower court that allowed a pregnant woman, whose fetus was unlikely to survive, to have an abortion.
The decision to “administratively stay” the lower court order is not final, but it does pause the decision which cleared Kate Cox (31), for an abortion.
Cox, about 20 weeks pregant, found out last month that the developing fetus had trisomy 18 – a rare chromosomal condition likely to lead to stillbirth or death of the child shortly after birth.
Texas law bans most abortions, with limited exceptions. Her lawyers successfully sought and obtained an emergency order that allowed Cox to obtain an abortion.
In , Molly Duane said that she was a senior staff attorney with the Center for Reproductive Rights and that they are representing Cox.
State District Judge Maya Guerra Gamble granted the order on Thursday for Cox. She cited the risks to Cox’s fertility in the future if she were forced to deliver the baby.
Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton (a Republican) then requested that the Texas Supreme Court issue an emergency stay in order to block the Judge’s Order.
Duane is the attorney at the Center for Reproductive Rights. He has claimed that Cox’s life and future fertility were in danger.
Duane stated at a hearing on Thursday that “according to her physician, the medical treatment she requires is an abortion.”
After Friday’s Supreme Court decision, the Center stated that Cox had been informed last week that “her fetus has no chance of surviving.”
It said that due to Kate’s past medical history, the OB-GYNs had warned her to stop carrying the pregnancy as it could affect her health and fertility in future.
Paxton’s Office did not respond immediately to an email request for comment sent late Friday.
Paxton claimed in court documents that Cox did not qualify for the medical emergency exemption from the state law restricting the abortion.
His office and he also claimed that Texas law prohibits abortions based solely on the fact that the fetus will not survive outside of the womb.